Talk:Magnesium in biology

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Consider merging with magnesium in biological systems[edit]

There is a much longer article (mostly by me) on magnesium in biology at magnesium in biological systems

I think someone could merge the two to give a better starting point for this article. However with that done this article is likely to be outside the scope of the MCB project. Being then a more general article on magnesium ranging across mol bio, physiology etc.

With articles merged an animal physiology section should be written by someone who knows more that I do. This should be a general physiology section and NOT a human health section which has it proper place elsewhere.

Reveldrummond 03:55, 20 July 2007 (UTC)

Also magnesium deficiency (medicine). ImpIn | (t - c) 09:58, 18 June 2008 (UTC)

Food sources[edit]

I notice, many of these nutrition articles have a bias towards plant sources. What are some animal sources of magnesium? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:44, 10 April 2008 (UTC)

Good for insomnia?[edit]

"Not enough magnesium can lead to hypomagnesemia as described above, with irregular heartbeats, high blood pressure (a sign in humans but not some experimental animals such as rodents), insomnia and muscle spasms (fasciculation). However, as noted, symptoms of low magnesium from pure dietary deficiency are thought to be rarely encountered." Does this mean that extra magnesium doesn't help with insomnia, unless you have a deficiency, which is uncommon? There is some talk about how magnesium pills is supposed to help with sleep, something should be mentioned about that. If it works or not and so on. Ran4 (talk) 08:18, 7 August 2008 (UTC)

Evidence too weak to write this up as a health benefit yet. There is only one published clinical trial. It was small, and in it the elderly subjects were enrolled only if dietary magnesium was low. Abbasi B, Kimiagar M, et al. The effect of magnesium supplementation on primary insomnia in elderly: A double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial. J Res Med Sci 2012;17(12):1161-69.David notMD (talk) 18:56, 24 January 2017 (UTC)

Reverse potential[edit]

What is the reverse potential for magnisum in the brain ? XApple (talk) 15:40, 9 January 2009 (UTC)


These sections cherry-pick a few primary sources and fail to cite reviews, this isn't acceptable per WP:MEDRS. Reviews on this topic (such as PMID 16235322) give no support to the view presented in this text. Tim Vickers (talk) 03:37, 12 May 2009 (UTC)


According to a recent online survey, approximately 30% of parents give their autistic children a supplement of magnesium and vitamin B6 (Green 2006). There are conflicting studies as to whether or not this is an effective therapy for autism (Martineau 1985, Tolbert 1993, Findling 1997, Lelord 1981). There is no standardization of what dosages of magnesium and vitamin B6, nor are there standards as to which preparations of magnesium should be used. Varying doses used in popular practice may be confounding the results of scientific studies. Magnesium supplementation aims to normalize low levels in tissues, thus appropriate assays, such as erythrocyte magnesium measurements, should be used in dose ranging studies.

Mousain-Bosc and colleagues (2006) showed that children with autism - pervasive developmental disorder (PDD) (n = 33) had significantly lower red blood cell magnesium levels than controls (n = 36). Intervention with magnesium and vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) reduced PDD symptoms in 23 children out of 33, stereotyped restricted behavior (18 children), and abnormal/delayed functioning (17 children); it improved social interactions in 23 children and communication in 24 children.

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder[edit]

Mousain-Bosc and colleagues (2006) showed that children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) (n = 46) had significantly lower red blood cell magnesium levels than controls (n = 30). Intervention with magnesium and vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) reduced hyperactivity, hyperemotivity/aggressiveness and improved school attention.[citation needed]

Consider merging magnesium deficiency (agriculture) into here[edit]

The above short article is about magnesium deficiency in soils and plants, which is mostly (but not quite all) what THIS article is about. The human magnesium deficiency stuff is collected mostly at Magnesium deficiency (medicine) and Hypomagnesemia. I don't have a strong desire to merge plant and animal deficiency articles, because their mechanisms are so different. If there's to be an article about mechanisms of magnesium handling common to all living organisms, it should remain this one. The magnesium deficiency (agriculture) could easily be absorbed into the plant section of magnesium in biology (here). Meanwhile, hopefully it will be expanded eventually (perhaps with some material summarized in this article and moved to the plant article?)

What say you all? SBHarris 02:58, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

Okay, after 4 months of no comment, the old magnesium defiency article is now magnesium deficiency (agriculture). Sorry for the bad pagemove mechanism. SBHarris 20:54, 8 March 2011 (UTC)

Is magnesium needed for teeth as well as bones?[edit]

As a male sufferer of osteoporosis, I have long understood that magnesium is an important element for our bones, and this is certainly implied in the paragraph that states that magnesium deficiency can result in osteoporosis. However, isn't it also needed for our teeth? I am not an expert in magnesium deficiency, so do not wish to edit the article myself, but if any one knows about these things, the paragraph on human health could spell out more clearly how magensium is an important element for both teeth and bones. ACEOREVIVED (talk) 23:03, 8 May 2012 (UTC)

This website:

does stress that magnesium is needed for teeth as well as bones. ACEOREVIVED (talk) 10:23, 16 May 2012 (UTC)


Is one to understand that magnesium compounds other than MgCl2 do NOT have hypotensive effects? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2602:306:CF99:2080:40D2:BF5A:6E42:4B33 (talk) 18:04, 1 September 2015 (UTC)

No. This meta-analysis cites many magnesium clinical trials - not all MgCl - with reports of blood pressure lowering, and mentions earlier meta-analyses. There is disagreement among the studies. The gist appears to be that the higher the baseline BP, the stronger the effect, and the higher the dose, the stronger the effect. There is a lot of sloppy research on the topic, so I personally would not yet support a claim that magnesium lowers BP. [Rosanoff A, Plesset MR. Oral magnesium supplements decrease high blood pressure (SBP>155 mmHg) in hypertensive subjects on anti-hypertensive medications: a targeted meta-analysis. Magnes Res. 2013 Jul-Sep;26(3):93-9.]David notMD (talk) 20:23, 3 February 2017 (UTC)
Rewrote, citing Kass. There does appear to be a MODEST blood pressure lowering with magnesium supplementation. The effect larger when doses higher, but be aware that >350 mg considered a risk for diarrhea as a side effect. David notMD (talk) 14:30, 22 May 2017 (UTC)

bioavailability in food[edit]

In the area of nutrition supplements, Magnesium oxide is infamous for being very cheap and common but having extremely low bioavailability, and thus nearly useless for nutrient purposes. Most other Magn supplement chemical forms are supposed to be much more bioavailable, at about 30%. What form is Magnesium in, in common foods, and what is the bioavailability in various foods -- is there significant variation in this?- (talk) 18:36, 6 September 2016 (UTC)

According to the DRI text (ref #10), bioavail from food is on the order of 50%. This is more mechanics than chemistry. Food leaves the stomach slowly, so that after a meal it is ~60 minutes before food starts to enter the small intestine, and 3-4 hours to finish. Much of magnesium absorption is passive diffusion across the cells of the small intestine wall, so the slower and longer, the better the overall absorption. Supplements, especially if not consumed with a meal, go through too fast and reach the large intestine unabsorbed. There magnesium draws water into the intestinal contents, resulting in wetter stools, up to diarrhea. Again, according to DRI text, magnesium absorption from foods hindered by high fiber, high phytate or very low protein.David notMD (talk) 00:46, 8 February 2017 (UTC)

list of foods[edit]

The current article list of foods:

  • "Following are some foods and the amount of magnesium in them:
Black-eyed peas (1/2 cup) = 45 mg

is rather random and pitiful. It is also unsourced.

Many better versions are available. Here is a reputable source:

  • https ..

- (talk) 18:37, 6 September 2016 (UTC)

small intestines primary site for Magnesium absorption[edit]

This source:
says that in the human body most magnesium absorption occurs in the small intestines. It seems to include some respectable sources. If this is a true fact it would be worth mentioning in the article.- (talk) 19:21, 6 September 2016 (UTC)

Absorption of most essential nutrients is small intestine. In my opinion not worth mentioning in entry for each nutrient, but valid to create content in any entry on bariatric surgery, as it is well known that removing a portion of the small intestine for this weight-loss procedure (or for any other reason) will cause nutrient malabsorption. This problem may not be true for magnesium, as what is removed is a portion of the duodenum, whereas most magnesium absorption takes place in jejunum and ileum.David notMD (talk) 17:46, 31 January 2017 (UTC)

Citation 4 not working[edit]

Citation 4 is broken link"

"Magnesium" Centre for Cancer Education, University of Newcastle upon Tyne.  — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:26, 22 September 2016 (UTC) 

Dietary Reference Intake[edit]

I am creating the same format for DRIs for vitamins and minerals. That is a U.S.- based system that identifies Estimated Average Requirements (EARs), Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDAs), Adequate Intakes (AIs) if there is not enough information to establish EARs and RDAs, and Tolerable Upper Intake Levels (ULs). Another major regulatory agency that has established ULs is the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). ULs for both are provided, as they often differ. If there is a UL (for some vitamins none has been determined) then rationale may be covered in a Toxicity section. In addition to DRIs, the U.S. also established Daily Values, using this on food and dietary supplement labels as % DV. Most of the DVs were revised in May 2016. What I have written can be improved. It lacks EFSA or other major country RDAs. It lacks an estimate of what percentages of people are deficient - although that is often covered in a separate section on deficiency and consequences of deficiency. I am creating this Subject in all of the Talk pages of the vitamin and mineral entries I have edited. Comments and improvements are welcome.David notMD (talk) 18:45, 24 January 2017 (UTC)